“When God our Savior revealed his kindness and love, He saved us, not because of the righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy. He washed away our sins, giving us a new birth and new life through the Holy Spirit. Titus Chapter III
I was about six years old when I started my first business. I discovered that Tapp's Grocery store would actually give me 5 cents for an empty pop bottle! I was surprised even more by the fact that people would leave them around like free money to be claimed. So, I would search the neighborhood for orphaned pop bottles. One day after cleaning up a couple of bottles and setting off down the path to Tapp's store, I ran across a bottle submerged in a dried-up mud puddle. I dug it out with a stick and tucked it under my arm to take back home later and clean it up. When I got to the store and presented the two "cleaned" up bottles, Russell Tapp gave me 15 cents. I told him I only had two that were "cleaned" up. He then told me it didn't matter what condition they were in when I brought them in, but, they all had the same value.
What a lesson. How much are we as humans like this when it comes to understanding God's purpose and ways? Redeemed. First of all, no matter our condition, we all have the same value. Jesus Christ paid the same price for each of us to redeem us. Second, no matter how much we try to clean ourselves up to be acceptable to Him, we cannot be clean enough through our own efforts. The bottling company has its own process and standards and will not accept anything less than perfectly clean. Only God can purify us by His Son's blood. Lastly, we are then filled up by the Holy Spirit to be poured out for His purpose. Redeemed, Restored, and Repurposed.
Mark B Weaver